No plan to sabotage direct flights to US, say KQ workers

Kenya Airways
Kenya Airways plane. PHOTO| COURTESY

With only few days left before the inaugural direct flight between Kenya and the USA, panic is fast spreading at the national carrier Kenya Airways.

The Kenya Aviation Workers Union (KAWU) insists it has no intentions of a boycott.

“KAWU is supportive of KQ, KAWU is not sabotaging New York flights, there is no boycott. KAWU has not issued a strike notice,” said the aviation workers union Secretary General Moss Ndiema.

KAWU has, however, put across conditions it says the management of Kenya Airways must meet before they give their members the green light for the much anticipated take off.

Some of the codntions include that cabin crew cannot be assigned duties beyond 15 hours, members be allowed flight time of between 17 and 21 hours as well as rest facilities on board. KAWU also wants it’s members paid Ksh.5000 for every hour extended on duty.

According to the union, Kenya Airways Chief Executive Officer Sebastian Mikhoz has not been available to them to discuss this contentious issue.

“Our position is let him stop maligning us, we want members to operate the New York flights legally because as it today he lacks the instruments to deploy them on that flight,” added Ndiema.

The position taken by the union is said to have rattled the government with Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia calling for patience.
In a letter dated October 22nd, KQ CEO had intimated that the union was planning a boycott to thwart the planned Sunday historic take off.

Sebastian Mikosz, insisted that he was only available to sit down with the union over a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) once he gets out of his to do list, the initial flight to New York City.

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Story By Dennis Otieno
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